Books by Philip Ball

Philip Ball is the author of Life’s Matrix (FSG, 2000), Bright Earth (FSG, 2002), and Critical Mass (FSG, 2004), which won the Aventis Science Book Prize in 2005.

Released: Oct. 22, 2014

"How much did Nazism compromise its scientists? In this polished account, Ball finds that the jury is still out, even as the evidence mounts and the pursuit of firsthand records and documentary testimony continues."
An examination of the response of German scientists to the rise of the Third Reich and its interference with their work. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 2008

"A revelatory look at a seminal period in art history."
The intellectual revolution in medieval France, as embodied in the architecture of a great cathedral. Read full book review >
Released: April 18, 2006

"Often slow going, but worth the effort."
The life and times of Philip Theophrastus Bombast von Hohenheim, aka Paracelsus, the "father of modern medicine." Read full book review >
Released: June 1, 2004

"A highly provocative work of popular science."
Can human nature be reduced to a set of laws that can then be used to organize society? By this intriguing account, many a physicist is now exploring such a question. Read full book review >
Released: Jan. 1, 2003

"Solid scientific history, entertainingly presented."
Having taken readers on a guided tour of molecules (Stories of the Invisible, 2001), Nature consultant editor Ball now turns his attention to the elements. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 1, 2001

"A solid, well-written overview of molecular chemistry."
British science writer Ball (Life's Matrix: A Biography of Water, 2000, etc.) offers a short introduction to chemistry, with a strong emphasis on that of our own bodies. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 1, 2001

"A welcome addition to any artist's—or art lover's—library."
Great art requires talent, hard work, and a singular vision—and it doesn't hurt to have a chemistry set nearby. Read full book review >
LIFE'S MATRIX by Philip Ball
Released: June 1, 2000

"A superb and quenching portrait of this modest association of atoms that alone permits life among us. (30 b&w illustrations)"
Water may be the universal solvent, but Ball (Designing the Molecular World, not reviewed) uses its history and properties, along with his artful narrative voice, to transfix readers. Read full book review >